I woke up to a beautiful, glowing early morning mist. As I sipped my coffee I caught sight of an acrobatic squirrel high up in the big tree outside my window. He was sailing through the branches and for a second I felt the thrill of flight and held my breath. Like a Cirque de Soliel performer he hit his landing on the tiniest of branches and then after bouncing madly….he shot off and I lost sight of his fluffy tail in the mist. I laughed out loud as I noticed that I was not the only one watching….my cat was glued to the window too.
We are in one of the last summer days as we move into Autumn. Orvis has put out their pumpkins and the trees are just beginning to change color. The whole of Manchester is slowly getting ready for the pageant of color that is on it’s way. But…for the moment…it is still just around the corner.
We were lucky enough to receive an amazing assortment of end of summer garden vegetables…all heirloom from a local super green thumb gardener. Mark has made the most amazing chunky Ratatouille topped with goat cheese and then baked. I feel like this dish is a wonderful transition from summer to fall. I have paired it with our wine Duet. This is two half glasses of Pinot Noir…one from Oregon and one from Austria. Yum! I have also added an Autumn Mule to my drink menu. Oh yes I did. Hint….apple cider. Come on Autumn!
As summer fades and glorious autumn moves in….take time to go on a Sunday drive and pick apples, or just watch a squirrel scamper in the red leaves over your morning coffee…and laugh.
As I took my walk this morning I was smelling fresh mowed grass and looking at pretty flowers in yards, on porches, in hanging baskets and it makes me smile. Manchester on a beautiful July morning is just a sight. The birds singing, the clouds drifting overhead and a flag waving from every front porch. It’s the kind of day you expect to smell BBQ on a grill later in the afternoon or see people sipping ice tea on the porch. In other words….it’s my kind of day.
Speaking of BBQ….Mark is making an appetizer….wait for it….Tamarind BBQ Pork Eggroll. It’s so good I can’t even begin to describe it. Of course I am paring it with our Austrian white duet….half glass each of two different Grunner Veltlinners. I do like to have fun with our wines.
Also Mark has his nod to July with our amazing Strawberry Shortcake. Let me explain….warm almond shortcake, summer strawberries, vanilla ice cream and homemade whipped cream. That’s right…that’s what I said. It just makes me happy. If you pair a glass of a delicious Creamy Lemoncello with it you will be tasting summer.
I hope your Fourth of July is fun with family and sparklers,
Have you looked out the window? What I see out mine is a green, lush landscape that takes my breath away. Like a honey crisp apple…each day is delicious. I have opened windows and doors and am letting the sun shine in. I’m not the only one either….everyone is out and about all over Manchester.
Mark is enjoying this weather also….he has the kitchen door wide open and if you pass by you can smell something delicious in the oven. One of my favorite desserts has returned….Vanilla Flan with Dulce de Leche, Banana and cinnamon plantain crisps. That’s right….it is as good as it sounds. I have recently discovered a creamy lemoncello that we serve cold and it’s amazing with any dessert. I am going to buy up all of it in town. I really am….today. See…I can find any excuse to go outside.
Please ….let the sun kiss you. Call me,
Homemade drop donuts tossed in cinnamon sugar and served with homemade chocolate ganache…hot chocolate!!!! Oh for pity!!
Manchester has on her party dress!! Greenery, bows, a touch of glitter…and the snow! The only thing better than driving through town is walking around town. Then while your cheeks are pink and you are crunching on the snow….somewhere a door will open and you will catch a bit of Christmas music…..a whiff of coffee or hot chocolate….the feeling of good will. You see families passing with laughter and people waving…. wait……I think someone wrote a song about Manchester!!
Mark, as usual is celebrating with a dish that is so warm and wonderful it literally makes people happy. It’s the time of year for his Gil Feather Turnip Gratin. He keeps tweaking it and this year he has added on top of the homemade béchamel sauce….sautéed shitake mushroom, onion and garlic. This warms you down to your littlest toe. Then just to make your littlest toe wiggle……wine of course. CASTELLO MONACI “LIANTE”, SALICE SALENTINO, 2013 ……just the thing.
And for those just out of the cold….a warm toddy called “Fireside” with Fireball cinnamon Bourbon, Tuaca vanilla liquor and hot apple cider. Does that not sound like the most delicious thing ever?
Happy Holidays Everyone! I hope your season is filled with love, laughter, good food and good friends!
I just love October!! I mean really….so many wonderful things to do. Apple picking, craft shows, Autumn flowers, apple cider, warm fuzzy sweaters….and my favorite….gawking at the amazing colors in nature. Mark says I sound like I’m watching fireworks they way I oooh and aaah. I’m not the only one….I drive through Manchester and I see people taking photos of trees. I get them!!
My homage to the season…….Autumn Sangrias!! Red and white with spiced rum and cider. Delicious…if I do say so myself.
Mark has been busy. He is making an appetizer of Cabot Cheese croquets with sautéed prosciutto and red bell peppers and then he adds a bit of anchovy mayonnaise. Just add a glass of Silver Totem Cabernet….. annnnnnd….poof….magic.
I want you to enjoy the magic that is in the air this October! Find time to get outside and if that is impossible….just munch on an apple while you stare out the window.
I can’t believe how green & lush it is in Vermont. There are streams everywhere and in Manchester the lawns are pristine. I live in picture postcard Main Street, USA and I love it. We went to the fireworks this year and it was amazing. Seriously, this event will take your breath away. If you ever get the chance….I’m not kidding!
Mark is taking advantage of the summer by adding a Blueberry Cobbler for two. It takes a thirty minute bake time and comes out so hot and delicious with vanilla ice cream on top. This dessert tastes like July. I had a guest tell me after one bite….she wanted my life. I just loved her. Do you know what is perfect with this dessert? I DO……Lemoncello! You know I’m right! I even have a drink this summer with blueberries and lemon. It’s such a delicious summer pairing!
Speaking of summer….put on your shorts and T-shirt and go hike up to a lake. Better yet…inner tube down a river. Just drift along with the sun peeking through the trees and feel the cool water as you become a child again.
Take in Vermont’s dramatic nature…you will love it.
We had a wonderful time away. We were able to stop at so many restaurants and see what’s trending. It’s a rough job…..yada, yada, yada…you know where I’m going with this.
Now that we are back we are so excited to be open again. We did a little work on the place and it looks pretty darn good if I say so myself. We also did a little work on the menu. As usual Mark is having fun. His latest is Pan Sautéed Octopus served with black ink buccatini pasta & puntanesca. Of course he made one for us to try, and of course I had to pair a wine with it….I’m having fun too. I chose the El Pedrosal, Tinto Fino, Ribera Del Duero. You will love it.
On a side note…..can I ask? What is up with all the rain? I almost freaked out when I looked at my weather app and it says rain for days. It’s wonderful for all the trees, plants and grass…but my hair….yikes! I’ll live…..just a little frizzier than usual. For those of you who want to make fun of me….just remember who’s making your drinks. Oh…..that reminds me. We are offering a high end tequila shot that is presented fun.
CALL ME…..I CAN’T WAIT TO SEE YOU!!
It is that quiet time right before spring explodes. One minute you are looking at the end of winter and the next time you look up green is everywhere. I love the changes that come with the seasons. It’s time to lovingly put away the hot buttered rum until next winter and bring out some light spring drinks. Speaking of which….. I have a mojito that we make with iced mint tea. Yum!!
Just a heads up….we will be taking our annual spring break from April 3rd and reopening on Tuesday, May 3rd. We are going to recharge, spring clean and relax. We want to come back with new ideas and loads of energy. Mark always has a surprise or two up his sleeve. We aren’t even gone yet and we can’t wait to get back.
Enjoy your Spring, don’t blink!